Android, Tizen and Other Open Phone Platforms are Drawing Buzz

by Ostatic Staff - Jun. 03, 2014

There are a lot of headlines being generated about open phone platforms this week. Apple CEO took a shot at Android at the company's Worldwide Developer's Conference, even as he announced that many APIs and platform-level features in iOS are going to be opened up for developers for the first time.

Meanwhile, developers gathered to confer about the open source Tizen phone platform, and Samsung has delivered the first Tizen-based smartphone. Finally, Mozilla's Mitchell Baker announced on stage that the company's open Firefox OS mobille platform is aimed at "all of humanity."

As Computerworld reports:

"[Tim] Cook also swung at Android with the same stick he had wielded against Windows, contrasting iOS 7's 90%-plus penetration with the 9% adoption of Android 4.4, aka "KitKat."

Of course, Cook left out the fact that the most widely used version of Android is 4.1.x, the first "Jelly Bean" version launched in 2012, which has 34 percent market share.

Nevertheless, Apple is taking a number of features in iOS that have been closed and making them open for developers, which is good news.

The Samsung Z also made waves this week, debuting as the first smartphone based on the Tizen platform. According to Forbes:

"The Samsung Z goes head-to-head with some of the most powerful phones on the market. It packs a 4.9in Super AMOLED display, 2.3GHz quad core Snapdragon processor, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of native memory with a microSD card expansion slot, 4G compatibility and NFC. The Samsung Z also has a fingerprint sensor built into the home button and heart rate monitor on the back to match the Samsung Galaxy S5."

Finally, at Quartz's Next Billion event in Seattle, Mozilla's Mitchell Baker noted that Firefox OS has arrived in 15 markets and is a truly open platform aimed at "all of humanity." 

As we head toward the second half of the year, open platforms are going to be heating up smartphone competition.